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How has regionalism in the 1990s affected trade?

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  • Soloaga, Isidro
  • Winters, L. Alan

Abstract

The authors apply a gravity model to data on annual non-fuel imports for 58 countries for the years 1980-96, to quantify the effects on trade of recently created or revamped preferential trade agreements (PTAs). They modify the usual gravity equation to identify the separate effects of PTAs on intra-bloc trade, members'total imports, and members'total exports. They also formally test the significance of changes in the estimated coefficients before and after the blocs'formation. Their estimates give no indication that the"new wave"of regionalism boosted intra-bloc trade significantly. They found convincing evidence of trade diversion only for the European Union and the European Free Trade Association. For the same blocs they also observed"export diversion", which would be consistent with these blocs'imposing a welfare cost on the rest of the world. Trade liberalization efforts in Latin America have had a positive impact on the imports of bloc members (Andean Group, Central American Common Market, Latin American Integration Association, and MERCOSUR). Increasing propensities to export generally accompanied increasing propensities to import, suggesting that general trade liberalization had a strong effect. The exception was MERCOSUR, for which import and export propensities displayed opposite movements, with exports performing worse than expected over the mid-1990s. Although MERCOSUR members have undoubtedly liberalized since the mid-1980s, these results suggest that their trade performance has been influenced more by competitiveness than by trade policy.

Suggested Citation

  • Soloaga, Isidro & Winters, L. Alan, 1999. "How has regionalism in the 1990s affected trade?," Policy Research Working Paper Series 2156, The World Bank.
  • Handle: RePEc:wbk:wbrwps:2156
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    Cited by:

    1. Sarath Chandran, B.P., 2010. "Trade Compatibility Between India And Asean Countries," MPRA Paper 33138, University Library of Munich, Germany.
    2. Giulia BETTIN & Alessia LO TURCO, 2009. "A Cross Country View On South-North Migration And Trade," Working Papers 331, Universita' Politecnica delle Marche (I), Dipartimento di Scienze Economiche e Sociali.
    3. Felicitas Nowak-Lehmann D. & Inmaculada Martínez-Zarzoso & Stephan Klasen & Dierk Herzer, 2009. "Aid and Trade - A Donor's Perspective," Journal of Development Studies, Taylor & Francis Journals, pages 1184-1202.
    4. Adeline Bachellerie & Jérôme Héricourt & Valérie Mignon, 2009. "From various degrees of trade to various degrees of financial integration: What do interest rates have to say?," Aussenwirtschaft, University of St. Gallen, School of Economics and Political Science, Swiss Institute for International Economics and Applied Economics Research, vol. 64(03), pages 365-402, December.
    5. Tiiu Paas & Egle Tafenau, 2004. "The Baltic Sea Region’s Role in Trade Integration," University of Tartu - Faculty of Economics and Business Administration,in: Modelling the Economies of the Baltic Sea Region, volume 17, chapter 3, pages 92-115 Faculty of Economics and Business Administration, University of Tartu (Estonia).
    6. Manchin, Miriam & Pelkmans-Balaoing, Annette O., 2008. "Clothes without an Emperor: Analysis of the preferential tariffs in ASEAN," Journal of Asian Economics, Elsevier, vol. 19(3), pages 213-223, June.
    7. Jérôme Trotignon, 2009. "L'intégration régionale favorise-t-elle la multilatéralisation des échanges ?," Post-Print halshs-00335633, HAL.
    8. Byambasuren, Tsenguunjav & Gochoo, Munkh-Erdene, 2015. "Optimizing the Structure of Mongolian Foreign Trade and the Alternative Policy of Successful Transition," MPRA Paper 61803, University Library of Munich, Germany.
    9. Grant, Jason H. & Parmeter, Christopher F., 2008. "Has The World Trade Organization Promoted Successful Regional Trade Agreements?," 2008 Annual Meeting, July 27-29, 2008, Orlando, Florida 6551, American Agricultural Economics Association (New Name 2008: Agricultural and Applied Economics Association).
    10. Patricia Augier & Michael Gasiorek & Charles Lai-Tong, 2007. "Multilateralising Regionalism: Relaxing the Rules of Origin Or Can Those Pecs Be Flexed?," CARIS Working Papers 03, Centre for the Analysis of Regional Integration at Sussex, University of Sussex.
    11. Sandra Poncet, 2006. "Economic Integration of Yunnan with the Greater Mekong Subregion ," Asian Economic Journal, East Asian Economic Association, vol. 20(3), pages 303-317, September.
    12. Seck, Abdoulaye & Cissokho, Lassana & Makpayo, Kossi & Haughton, Jonathan, 2010. "How Important Are Non-Tariff Barriers to Agricultural Trade within ECOWAS?," Working Papers 2010-3, Suffolk University, Department of Economics.
    13. Simwaka, Kisu, 2010. "An Empirical Evaluation of Trade Potential in Southern African Development Community," MPRA Paper 15894, University Library of Munich, Germany.
    14. Lavee, Doron & Beniad, Gilat & Moshe-Jantzis, Moran, 2013. "Israel's foreign trade policy: The benefits of its reform," Journal of Policy Modeling, Elsevier, vol. 35(2), pages 255-270.
    15. Balasan, Andrei-Cristian, 2012. "Literature review concerning the relationship between globalization and regionalization in the world economy," MPRA Paper 39746, University Library of Munich, Germany.
    16. Carrere, Celine, 2006. "Revisiting the effects of regional trade agreements on trade flows with proper specification of the gravity model," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 50(2), pages 223-247, February.
    17. Trotignon, Jérôme, 2010. "Does Regional Integration Promote the Multilateralization of Trade Flows?: a Gravity Model Using Panel Data," Journal of Economic Integration, Center for Economic Integration, Sejong University, vol. 25, pages 223-251.
    18. Rahman, Mohammad Mafizur, 2005. "The Determinants of Bangladesh's Trade: Evidence from the Generalized Gravity Model," Working Papers 3, University of Sydney, School of Economics.

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